France – Lyon

LyonThomas Morvan has come from France for an internship with us at Stanfords in London. Here, he shares the highlights of Lyon, where he is studying Business.

Bonjour! When I arrived in Lyon the first thing that I thought is this city is a little Paris, without the inconvenience of transport or the stress. Its location in France means it is a really great mix between north and south, a beautiful city with really good weather and friendly people. Lyon is the second largest French city after Paris, and the third is Marseille.

The Saint-Jean and the Croix-Rousse areas, which are noted for their narrow passageways (traboules) that pass through buildings and link the streets either side, were designated Unesco World Heritage Sites in 1998.

The best event in the city’s calendar is on 8 December, each year at this date is marked by la Fête des lumières (the Festival of Lights), a celebration of thanks to the Virgin Mary, who purportedly saved the city from a deadly plague in the middle ages. During the event, the local population places candles (lumignons) at their windows, and the city of Lyon organises impressive large-scale light shows onto the sides of important Lyonnais monuments, such as the medieval Cathédrale St-Jean.

If you want to find refreshment you absolutely must go to Old Lyon, between St Jean and St Paul, to find everything your heart desires. You could eat in one of the Bouchons – typical Lyonnais restaurants that are usually convivial and serve local dishes and wines. Or just drink a beer near the Saone River.

In Lyon you will find everything you could want – culture, sport, partying or just relaxation in the Parc de la Tete d’Or. A visit to Lyon is guaranteed a success!

You can find really good information on Rhône-Alpes by Cadogan Guides, in Lyon City Spots by Thomas Cook or with maps IGN 3031 OT and Lyon by Michelin.

Author: Thomas Morvan

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